Ongoing Adventures of Answer Pile
#please excuse the lackataters
#there is some gold in there
More responses to things from the Ask…thing. In case there aren’t enough words here already, there are more of them after the break.
Q. writetimetodraw asked you:
I just finished an internship at the Erie Canal Museum, and while I haven’t dug around much just yet, figured you would be an excellent resource to answer my nagging question. Was the Erie Canal involved in the bootlegging of liquor in the ’20s? And if so, how much? Thank you so much! <3
A. That sounds like an interesting gig!
As for bootlegging by way of canal - absolutely.
The US-Canada border around the Great Lakes was the biggest hot spot for smuggling liquor into the country during Prohibition. The bulk of the trafficking took place across the Detroit River, but pretty much all of the connecting waterways were put to use, and as you might imagine, a good deal of it was shuffled off into New York. That would be where waterways like the Niagara River, the Oswego Canal and Erie Canals became useful. Rum-runners were known to have traveled the canal with contraband hidden among their cargo, or strapped to the bottom of the boats. Towpaths alongside the canal were used to move liquor, defunct offshoots of the canal were put to use, and in the winter, runners were known to drive right on the ice in some areas, or even pull sleds loaded with liquor. The are a number of former speakeasies - roadhouses, mansions and restaurants - along the waterways in upstate New York too.
If you want to know more about the illicit liquor trade in and around Lake Erie, I suggest looking up the Purple Gang, and characters like Rocco Perri and Stefano Magaddino (a bootlegging undertaker, coincidentally).
Q. changeling007 asked you:
Do you title your comics with actual words, or do you just kind of roll around on the keyboard until you produce something vaguely pronounceable?
A. I alternate rolling around on the keyboard and mashing it with my face. That’s how I write dialogue too. ‘Pronounceable’ doesn’t really figure into the technique.
Yet More Answer Pile
#tracy j butler
Sorry things have been quiet here lately. Busy behind the scenes, though. Meanwhile, here’s some responses. More yacking after the break.
Q. is viktor popping up anytime soon?
Q. viktor where that hunk des dayz?
A. He’s about. He’ll appear in the next series of pages, a little bit.
Q. batman-girl asked you:
i love lackadaisy so much! any idea on when more off the comic will be put on the website?
A. Thank you!
Soon, if all goes as planned. I really need the holiday time off from work to finish what I’m presently working on, though (which is an extra large update that I’ll either post in big chunks or as a page-a-day sort of thing). Sorry again for the long delay.
Q. My question is this: I am applying for some art scholarships soon to which I must sumbit a portfolio of some of my best art-I’m flooding with ideas! But every time I put pecil to paper the drawing never has the same charisma or effect as it does inside the crevices of my mind. It comes out placid and awkward. How do YOU go about begining your rough drafts? How do you tweak your mistakes? I know it all comes down to practice…but I feel like I’m missing some piece of hepful info…
A. That’s kind of a vague issue to try to diagnose, so I apologize in advance if I come up short on useful things to say. Also, to be honest, my art seldom comes out on paper exactly the way it looks in my head too; and I’m often not terribly satisfied with my final result, but providing myself as many opportunities to get it right as I can tends to yield better results, at least. These things include…
— Accepting that the original mental image for a piece - while it might have inspired the art - is not necessarily the most effective approach. Don’t forgo all the logistics of formulating a piece of art in a frustrated attempt to recreate precisely what was in your head. If you’re a little more open minded about it, you might stumble on something better.
— Start with thumbnail sketches to work out composition and character poses, and take advantage of the quick and dirty nature of thumbnailing to experiment with different arrangements, perspectives, canvas shapes and such.
— Gather visual references. Once the contents of the image are decided upon, do some research. Look at pictures of the things you’re trying to draw. This is helpful, of course, if you aren’t quite sure of proportions, certain details and the like, but it can be surprisingly helpful or inspiring even if you are familiar with your subject matter. There’s nothing admirable about forswearing visual resources and guessing your way along because some misguided asshole individual suggested to you at some point that looking at references constitutes cheating.
— Don’t get too attached to drawings or even to something you’ve started painting. Stop, recalculate and rework parts if you have to. If the piece is fundamentally failing to achieve what you want, throw it away or move on to something else. You can return to it later with a fresh perspective, or you leave it behind and write it off as a learning experience.
— Tweak it along the way. Once you’re almost done, tweak some more. Tweak the crap out of it. Digital media is fantastically useful for this sort of thing - scanning a piece in progress and zooming in to improve the details, zooming out to get a better look at the overall effect, flipping the canvas around to make sure your figures and faces aren’t skewed, rescaling to fix proportions that are slightly off, checking your contrast, and so forth. Even if you’re working traditionally, digital tools can still be very useful - experimenting with adjustments without ruining the tangible piece, pre-planning color palettes, adjusting saturation levels for web display or in preparation for making prints, for instance.
Good luck with your scholarship applications!
I was just wondering what the names of the Members of the Lackadaisy Band were (besides Zib and Rocky of course). I absolutely love your comics, and I am a huge fan! Thank you for taking the time to make the fabulous story and pictures.
Thanks! Glad you enjoy the comic!
Zib - alto sax/tenor sax/clarinet/vocals
Ben - double bass/drums
Mozzie - piano/vocals
Sy - trumpet
J.J. - trombone (former member)
Rocky and his fiddle were a later addition
Rocky and Freckle are cousins, yet you almost always see Rocky with his aunt Nina rather than his parents. Who are they, and why are they a no-show?
One was chronically ill, and the other was working on the railroad, as it were (and has even less patience for Rocky’s Rocky-ness than Nina does). So, Rocky spent a lot of his childhood bunking at the McMurray’s place.
Despite them being specifically mentioned in dialogue earlier, I didn't pay much attention to Ivy's breeches until seeing her run in them during the Lackadaisy Construction piece. Given that all her friends at her school seem to be wearing the same, I'd assume they're a uniform of some sort, but is it based off an actual school's uniform from that time period? All of the 20s-era examples I've been able to look up so far have had all the women wearing skirts, not breeches. Or, since Lackadaisy Scrapbook has two of them in skirts and one in breeches, is it simply fashion and not a uniform?
When Rocky and Freckle pick her up at school, she mentions being there for practice. It’s not explicitly stated, but combined with her clothing, it can be assumed she was referring to some sort of sports practice. So, it’s not exactly a school uniform - more like a sporting outfit.
Here’s some Sears-Roebuck from the 1920’s:
Knickers! The correct apparel for “out of doors”!